Author: Andy Lindquist

Andy grew up in the suburbs of the east bay and became fascinated with the local music scene from an early age, attending his first concert at the ripe age of 14. Since then he has stayed active in the local metal scene, going to countless shows and playing in his own thrash metal band, Invection. In addition to music, Andy has always had an interest in writing and public speaking, eventually graduating with a BA degree in Rhetoric from UC Berkeley. Andy is also an avid runner and running coach, with a USA Track and Field master coach certification. When not attending concerts or track meets you can find Andy running on many of the picturesque trails around the east bay area.

Phoebe Bridgers Greek Theatre, Berkeley October 16, 2021 Photos by Greg Chow (@gregchow). There was a feeling of excitement and anticipation in the air as one walked the winding path through the UC Berkeley campus to the Hearst Greek Theatre on a Saturday night. A long line to get into the sold-out show stretched all the way down the street in both directions. After a seemingly endless stream of covid related restrictions on big events, this was clearly the first big concert many attendees had been to in years. As the crowd swelled, so did the palpable sense of anticipation…

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Chvrches Screen Violence Glassnote Records After a bid for pop glory on Love Is Dead, Chvrches have returned to their classic sound found on Screen Violence, and the result is their strongest overall album of their career. The key to Chvrches has always been synthesizing the old sounds of 80\s synth pop and 90s indie rock into something brand new that feels fresh and vital. While Love Is Dead had some strong songs, the production was a bit too overbearing and many of the arrangements were a bit too simple. Screen Violence sees the band returning to self-production and the…

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Deafheaven Infinite Granite Sargent House There were some indicators on the previous Deafheaven album, Ordinary Corrupt Human Love, that the band was expanding their sonic palette, and that new arrangements and even clean vocals were going to be an integral part of their sound moving forward. Still, the total absence of any vestiges of the old Deafheaven sound on Infinite Granite is still a bit jarring for the listener. Gone are the atonal bouts of fury that characterized their previous work, no more of George Clarke’s vicious snarls, instead we hear him actually singing. It’s clear from the opening track,…

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Epica Omega Nuclear Blast Records  Few bands truly live up to their name the way Epica does. As one could expect from hearing their name, the band excels in crafting the most epic-sounding symphonic metal around. And on this, their 8th full-length album, the Dutch sextet has outdone themselves, putting out an album as good as anything they have done. What makes Epica such an incredible band to listen to is the sheer density of their compositions. Even from the opening notes of “Alpha – Anteludium” you know the band has mapped out every single note and every single piece…

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Julien Baker Little Oblivions Rough Trade After two albums of very direct and confessional singer-songwriter music, replete with sparse guitar-based arrangements, Julien Baker has made the big jump to a full band record on Little Oblivious. The addition of drums along with much denser overall production really works wonders for Baker’s evocative and personal songwriting. This becomes apparent on the opening song “Hardline,” which is driven by a series of programmed drum loops. Baker played all of the instruments and percussion on Little Oblivions, giving the record a strong and coherent sound. Songs like “Faith Healer” demonstrate this newfound songcraft,…

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Diamond Head Lightning to the Nations 2020 Silver Lining Music There are few bands in the metal world as revered as the legendary Diamond Head. The band’s self-produced debut album, 1980’s White Album (due to it’s original pressing in a plain white sleeve) or more well known as Lightning to the Nations (after the opening song), was one of the greatest records to come out of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, influencing the likes of Metallica. In fact, Metallica were such huge fans that they have covered Diamond Head songs on numerous occasions, and their continued support of…

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Pallbearer Forgotten Days Nuclear Blast Few bands in the metal underground have shone as brightly as Pallbearer, who have developed into one of the best doom metal bands around over the course of their three previous albums. However, what sets the band apart is their willingness to expand their sound to include prog-rock elements, something that becomes apparent when listening to their newest full-length record Forgotten Days. While the production still has plenty of grime and grit to it, the band has honed down their sound: equal parts de-tuned lumbering riffs and spacy prog-rock sections. This is apparent from the…

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Ohms Deftones After a decade of sonic experimentation, Deftones have returned to their original punishing metal style, delivering one of the better albums in their career. While the previous three Deftones records, Diamond Eyes, Koi No Yokan, and Gore, each had plenty of great moments, there was a distinct lack of metal on many of those albums. Gore, in particular, featured very little input from guitarist Stephan Carpenter. Sensing the need to shake things up, Deftones enlisted the legendary metal producer Terry Date, who the band had not worked with since 2003’s self-titled album. The return of Date and Carpenter…

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S&M2 Metallica Buy While the idea of Metallica performing a concert with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra (SFSO) might seem ridiculous on paper, the results are anything but. To celebrate the new opening of the Chase Center in San Francisco last year Metallica once again teamed up with SFSO to put on a memorable performance that saw the band’s searing heavy metal merged seamlessly with the symphony. Seeing as this was the second time the band had done this type of collaboration, the resulting album/movie was appropriately titled S&M2. Recorded and filmed over the course of two sold-out nights, the…

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Lord of the Lost Swang Song III Napalm Records (Buy) Few bands in the metal world are as prolific as Lord of the Lost. Between live releases, studio albums, and symphonic ensemble records, the band churns out gripping and dynamic music at a dizzying clip. Swan Songs III is another ensemble piece featuring new songs and symphonic reworkings of songs from their most-recent albums. The double album starts out with 12 new songs that see the band working with the Lord of the Lost Ensemble to craft some gripping and majestic pieces. Frontman Chris Harms has truly mastered his vocal…

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Spirit World Pagan Rhythms In a day and age where most metal sounds overly polished and mechanical, Spirit World set out to prove to the world that real metal is not dead yet, far from it. The mastermind behind Spirit World, Stu Folsom, has pulled out all the stops on this album in creating a modern version of the sublime hardcore/metal releases of the past. You won’t find overcomposed and overproduced set pieces here, no, instead you will find plenty of pummeling riffs, harsh vocals, and slamming blast beats. The record’s lyrical themes focus on Satan returning to earth to…

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After two albums of mostly-instrumental music, Khruangbin have taken the big leap towards vocals on their third full-length release, Mordechai. For those of you wondering, yes, the results are great and each new twist and turn the band goes through on this record is mesmerizing. The trio of Mark Speer, Laura Lee, and Donald Johnson have continued to grow and adapt as musicians, as evident by the laid-back opener “First Class.” With Johnson’s sublime pocket groove and Speer’s Latin-influenced guitar work, the track hits all the right notes. The next song, the lead single “You and I,” is one of…

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Of Truth & Sacrifice Heaven Shall Burn Century Media    One of the heaviest bands in the metal world, Heaven Shall Burn have returned with a sprawling double album that pushes their sound in a bunch of different directions. Just by the name alone, you know that you are getting some of the most extreme European-style metal out there, as Heaven Shall Burn have built their reputation on having dense and overpowering records. With composer Sven Helbig (Rammstein, Pet Shop Boys) providing help with the orchestration that is featured on many of the tracks, the whole record has a certain grandiose…

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Overkill Slim’s February 27, 2020 Photos by Raymond Ahner With a devastating setlist spanning their entire career, Overkill brought down the house on a particularly energized Thursday evening. While you might think that a band that is forty years old would start to tone things down at this point in their career, Overkill show no signs of ever doing so. The band started off the evening with the ferocious “Last Man Standing,” a song driven by the pounding riffs of guitarists Dave Linsk and Derek Tailer along with the trebly bass attack of D.D. Verni. Overkill wasted no time in…

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Machine Head Fox Theater, Oakland February 21, 2020 Photos by Raymond Ahner Hometown favorites Machine Head came to the Fox Theater on a Friday night to play in front of a packed audience. That alone would be a good cause for celebration but this night was special as the band played an insane three-hour set that included a performance of their legendary debut album, Burn My Eyes. The band wasted no time, promptly walking onto the stage right as the clock hit 8PM, ripping through a thrashing version of “Imperium.” While much has been made of the lineup changes in…

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Poppy Great American Music Hall January 22, 2020 Photos by Garret Nicholson The hottest sensation in the metal underground in recent years has been Poppy, who was known more for her strange and esoteric music videos and cute electro-pop music before making an abrupt switch to metal. For those skeptical metal fans who were not yet convinced of Poppy’s utter mastery of metal, all it took was one stunning performance at the Great American Music Hall to convince the doubters that Poppy is the real deal. Hot off the release of her first 100% metal album, I Disagree, Poppy and…

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The Black Keys Chase Center November 20, 2019 Photos by Pollen Heath Rock fans were treated to quite the special at the Chase Center as The Black Keys and Modest Mouse brought their raucous and high-energy stage shows for a spectacular evening of live music. The Black Keys headlined the evening, with Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney delivering plenty of swinging blues rock songs from their entire career. With three backing musicians, the duo could really let loose and give these songs the extra energy they needed to burst through the PA system. The band opened up with the grooving…

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Amon Amarth The Warfield October 25, 2019 Photos by Raymond Ahner Metal fans were treated to four of Sweden’s best heavy metal bands on Friday night at the Warfield Theater in San Francisco, as Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy, At the Gates, and Grand Magus each plowed through some exciting sets. Amon Amarth headlined the evening with a furious setlist that left the sold-out crowd blown away. The band specializes in pummeling melodic death metal, combining soaring guitar harmonies with the bellowing death metal growls of lead singer Johan Hegg. With the stage decked out in Viking imagery and the drum…

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Babymetal The Warfield 10/4/19 Photos by Marc Fong While on paper the idea of combining cute Japanese girl-group pop with hyper-speed metal might not seem possible, Babymetal demonstrated on Friday night at the Warfield Theater in San Francisco that the two types of music are actually totally perfect for each. The band has been wowing audiences across the world for most of this decade, with their popularity in America just starting to gain momentum in recent years. Judging by how tightly packed fans were in the Warfield, their popularity with metal fans in the Bay Area has definitely grown in…

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Shaped by Fire As I Lay Dying Nuclear Blast In one of the most miraculous comebacks in recent memory, metalcore titans As I Lay Dying are back with a new album, Shaped by Fire. After the fallout resulting from lead singer Tim Lambesis’ arrest and incarceration for attempting to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013, it seemed that the other members of the classic As I Lay Dying lineup wanted nothing to do with Lambesis or the band. While Lambesis eventually served his time and was released, his ex-bandmates berated him in the press and seemed to…

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